Seminar: Internet Computing

Important Information

Moodle page for the seminar is now online here! First lecture to be held on Thursday (20 October 2022). 

Course Description

At the time of its inception, the Internet was mainly used for interconnecting globally distributed terminals with each other, forming mesh-like connections between interacting users performing distributed computations. The usage and topology, however, evolved soon to cater to client-server computing use-cases, e.g. web applications, content delivery, etc., which were abundant. Soon, the Internet evolved further and fragmented into 1) datacenter networks that were designed to support large volumes of computations and 2) public Internet that connected the end-users to the datacenters. More recently, the line between computing and networking has blurred even further with the emergence of edge computing and in-network computing technologies bringing compute operations from the private cloud WANs within the public network closer to the end-users.
While the network technologies and compute hardware have evolved over the past few decades, so have the networked applications that require computing within the network. Requirements for such applications can vary significantly based on context, required processing, and underlying network – which also influences the architectures of processing frameworks to support these requirements. For example, systems designed for batch processing big data applications in cloud environments cannot effectively handle live processing of AR/VR applications due to vastly different characteristics of underlying networks and the scale of input sources.

The Internet Computing seminar will explore the concepts, technologies and systems that lead to a strong coalition between distributed computing and the Internet. Moreover, the seminar will also investigate how the evolution in processing requirements of networked applications has led to new frameworks and techniques. The aim of the seminar is to explore different flavors of computing on the network so far and motivate participants to investigate:

  1. how would you build different frameworks for processing different application types
  2. what systems do we need to support the processing at the Internet-scale
  3. which new techniques do we need to effectively incorporate computing in the Internet.
The seminar will cover the following (and related) topics
  • (Evolution of) distributed computing frameworks and applications
  • Cloud networks, Content delivery networks
  • Software-Defined Networking (SDN)/ Network Function Virtualization (NFV)
  • Middleboxes in the Internet
  • Edge, Fog, and in-network computing
  • Peer-to-peer computing

(Expected) Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the seminar, the students will have broadened their knowledge of the evolution of network and distributed computing along with key technologies and frameworks that are enabling the amalgamation of the two together. In addition, The students will also become familiar with:

  • Learning to conduct individual scientific (literature) research on a topic
  • Learn to write a paper in LaTeX
  • Read and review seminal scientific articles similar to peer-review settings
  • Learning from lively peer discussions 
  • Converting topic into an interesting talk similar to a scientific conference

(Recommended) Pre-Requisites

  • The participants are expected to have taken an undergraduate-level course on computer networks and should be familiar with basics of distributed system principles.

  • Bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field is required.

  • Very good ability to write and present in English.

Please check with the instructors, if you think your background is insufficient.

Teaching and Learning Methods

  • Written paper, 6-8 pages in English using ACM SIGConf template (40%)
  • Presentation of the paper in English (~ 30 minutes) (25%)
  • Summaries of scientific articles (25%)
  • Active participation in the course: participating in in-class discussion (10%)


Course Moodle Page: link

  • Pre-Meeting: Thursday, 21.07.2022, 11:00 using BBB:
  • First lecture: 19th October, 2021 @ 14h00 (Zoom) -- hybrid mode (physical room 01.07.023 + Zoom)

Lectures will be held every Thursday at 14:00-16:00. Except for the first lecture, the seminar will be held virtually. Meeting link announced on Moodle.

Further Reading


Dr. Nitinder Mohan -- mohan at

Raphael Hetzel -- hetzel at